The Stuttgart Scorpions, German Football League quarterfinalists in 2019, have signed former German national team coach Martin Hanselmann as their new head coach for the 2020 season.
The team’s former head coach, Jermaine Guynn, will stay on as defensive coordinator.
The 56-year-old Hanselmann, a native of Rothenburg ob der Tauber, has been working as a coach since 1993, coaching the Franken Knights, Düsseldorf Panther, Cologne Falcons and the Würzburg Panthers. He was also German national coach from 2000 to 2006, during which time he was European champion in 2001 and won the 2005 World Games, which earned him the title of “Coach of the Year”. He is also head of the Bavarian State American Football Association.
AFI: How do you feel to be back in GFL?
Hanselmann: Terrific. Very nervous and excited. Watching a lot of film. If you ask me how I feels it’s just great to be back. This is a great fit for me.
AFI: How did you end up signing with Stuttgart?
Hanselmann: I met the Sports Director Andy Meyer when I was coaching the Cologne Falcons. He stepped down then as head coach to become defensive backs coach and let me coach the team. I took him with me to Western Illinois for a two-week crash course in coaching a college team two years ago . He took over as Sports Director in Stuttgart and wanted me to come and coach the team. He invited me to a game and I met the president, Volker Lässing and coach Guyn. Jermayne said he would like to step back and let me be head coach.
AFI: What kind of changes are you planning”
Hnselmann: I want to build on all the good things they have done this year. The GFL in the South is difficult to predict. Stuttgart did not keep pace with the other teams by adding new players as the season progressed. They saved money and they now have a very good football team.
AFI: Since you last coached in the GFL with the Cologne Falcons in 2014, what has changed in the league?
Hanselmann: Teams are stronger now. Teams have more money, they are more solid. There is a solid core of teams in both division. The league is more stable than it used to be.
AFI: Do you see a difference in football since the last time?
Hanselmann: The intensity of the game, especially on the line. I was amazed at the line play in the German Bowl. The passion for the game was incredible. The game is still the same though, a game of inches. The RPO may be all the rage but even in the NFL, if you watch the games, teams are still running the I formation. Braunschweig ran the ball the two thirds of the time this year and won the championship that way. A credit to coach Tomlin and Likins knowing their strengths and using them.
AFI: What are your immediate and long-term plans?
Hanselmann: I would like to set up training and development of German kids. You need to really coach up your German players. You win with your German players. We want to recruit more to speed up our development and we have started our recruiting already. Our budget will allow us to be very competitive if we spend our money the right way.